TOP candidate condemns waka jumping bill

Jenny Condie writes:

As someone nationally recognised as a “pain in the a…” for speaking out to an authoritarian party leader, it will be no surprise that I have thoughts about the latest waka jumping bill. In my view, the bill is a threat to our democracy, and should be opposed. We should be making it easier for new parties to enter Parliament, not harder.

TOP and Gareth Morgan is a good example of why this law would be so bad. One can well imagine if Gareth was a party leader in Parliament, he’s be using this law to kick out MPs from his caucus who dare to disagree with him. We know this, as this is what he did with his candidates!

The stated aim of the legislation is to preserve the integrity and proportionality of Parliament, by ensuring MPs who leave their party cannot continue in Parliament. However, over the years many MPs have left their party as a form of whistleblowing, because they believe the party is drifting away from its own stated goals and values. This, too, is a matter of integrity.

A good argument.

As someone who has spoken out about a party behaving in a way that is contrary to its stated values and been sacked for it, I naturally believe protecting the ability of individual MPs to act as whistleblowers is important.  

When the party leader can expel you from Parliament, you won’t dare to speak out.

She also quotes Sue Bradford:

How dishonourable of the to support the waka-jumping bill; if Rod & Jeanette hadn’t been able to leave the Alliance, Greens would never have entered Parliament in 1999 & the whole journey may have been stillborn. It’s sad to see forgotten.

The Green Party is voting for a law that would have prevented them from leaving the Alliance. Jim Anderton could have had them expelled from Parliament under this law once they announced they would contest the 1999 election as The Greens.

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